Tuesday, October 27, 2015


My copying of steps plus practice variation from Zentangle newsletter
I was quite fascinated with this tangle from the Zentangle® people when it showed up in my inbox not long ago. I am so familiar with the design at step 2 as a quilting motif but never stopped to think it was just two scallops off-set. This tangle called Zenith has so much potential because you can stop at different points rather than complete all steps, add lines, dots and echos in different ways and opt for a variety of shading touches. You can read the newsletter and see the variations here. I haven't Zentangled in a long time; with this new one to try and the fountain pens too, I spent a little time today creating on one of the tan Zentangle tiles.

My favorite little tangle's in the center.

And here is what I came up with. I actually love making frames with some of the Zentangle designs, leaving a circle or diamond in the center to showcase a little scene. The Zenith instructions encouraged practicing to get the flow, something not often suggested. I did some of that, trying to work out ahead of time how to turn corners, but I could have practiced a little more. The nice thing about Zentangling though is how forgiving it is of inconsistencies and general wonkiness. The "tipples" around the outside corners mask how unevenly I turned the outer corners, for instance. If you look closely, you can see how I deviated from step 6 in creating the outer border. The Zenith creating the diamond frame is based on a variation shown in the newsletter instructions. I followed suggested shadings...more or less...using a 4B graphite pencil and white charcoal.

And what did I think of the fountain pen? Actually, the medium-size 05 nib made a slightly thicker line than I am used to with my 01 Pigma Micron pens but I did like it for filling in the larger spaces and stippling. It did not glide quite like I thought it would over this particular paper and I often caught myself making no line at all when the angle of the nib got turned slightly, something you don't have to think about with a regular pen. This may not be the best use of a fountain pen, except for making those accents and heavy shadings.

It's quite interesting to see what Rick and Maria come up with and how others are creating with Zentangles, even if you have no intention of trying this yourself. Quilters will find many of the tangles familiar and might glean some new ways to incorporate them into their textile work. You can sign up for their newsletter here or follow their blog here


Lucia Sasaki said...

Hi Sheila thanks for sharing your new experience with Zentangle.
You know... it interesting seeing some things that i don't find here in Brazil yet. Zentangle is one of these things... Faber CAstell gelatos were another. Only recently i found these last here in São Paulo city.
i hope you have a very good time.
Thanks again!!

Michele Matucheski said...

Neat way to pass the time, Sheila! I can see how some of these lines would correspond with quilting motifs. You really can "cross the streams" there. For a while, I was literally studying Larkin Van Horn's wonderful beadwork, and trying to draw them as Zentangle-inspired sketches. I got really excited when you said you were working with a fountain pen (such a luxury!). Too bad it didn't do what you needed it to do for that tangles. It's a good brain workout!